The Hawks acquired Capela in a four-team trade deadline deal, and officially listed his injury as plantar fasciitis and a right calcaneus contusion.
After going so long without playing a game, Capela is itching to get back on a basketball court (and dominate in the paint).
“I’m really excited to just show my presence,” Capela said. “Doesn’t matter how it is, just excited to show my presence and just show that I’m here and show that I will be a big part of the team.”
Clint Capela yells after dunking the ball against the Minnesota Timberwolves during the second half of an NBA basketball game Friday, Jan. 24, 2020, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Craig Lassig)
Credit: Craig Lassig
Credit: Craig Lassig
The eight teams who were more than six games out of playoff contention and know their season is over (Atlanta, Cleveland, Detroit, New York, Chicago, Charlotte, Minnesota, Golden State) are working together to present a proposal of offseason guidelines to the league, whether that involves scrimmages or loosened practice-facility restrictions.
Depending on what gets approved by the league and Players Association, Capela is looking forward to working out more with his teammates over the summer and getting more familiar with their games.
Having a longer offseason (the 2020-2021 season is tentatively scheduled to begin Dec. 1) could work to Capela’s benefit as he gets back to 100% and game shape, though he’s already had quite a while to rehab.
“I’ve already had plenty of time,” Capela said of taking the extended offseason to heal. “But definitely, it’s going to help me to go back to the team, have a lot of workouts with the guys, get together 5-on-5, get together for some 3-on-3, get to know each other better and it’ll definitely give me plenty of time to get ready for the next season.”
Capela is stepping into a much different situation with the Hawks than he experienced on a veteran-heavy, winning Rockets team. It’s one in which he’s instantly perceived as an “older” player and leader, even though he just recently turned 26, but he welcomes that responsibility.
One of the bigger questions when the Hawks acquired Capela was how he’d fit alongside John Collins, who can now slide back to his natural position at power forward. Their styles have overlap as rim-running bigs, though Collins showed an increased ability to stretch the floor and shoot 3’s this past season.
For his part, Capela thinks the two will be able to play harmoniously, and will have plenty of time to iron out any kinks.
“I think we’re both going to have to (be) complementary with each other,” Capela said. “I know that he can shoot the ball, so ... he shoots good with the ball in his hands, he can drive to the basket, and I think I can do some of it too, drive to the basket and stuff like that. We’re just going to have to play together and I think we’re good enough to figure it out together on the court. And we’re definitely going to have time to do it, with all this time.”